I've made Caramel Corn and Honey Caramels, my two very favorite autumn treats (well, except for an apple pie or
six two) and gotten that out of my system. Also, out of my house, I'm happy to report. Otherwise, Papa Pea and I would have already gained a couple of unneeded winter hibernation pounds.
Here's the recipe for the caramels:
1 cup butter
1 lb. brown sugar
Dash of salt
2/3 cup light corn syrup
1/3 cup honey
1 - 15 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
Melt butter in heavy 3-qt. saucepan. Add brown sugar and salt. Stir until thoroughly combined. Stir in corn syrup and honey and mix well. Gradually add sweetened condensed milk stirring constantly.
Cook and stir over medium heat until mixture reaches 245° on candy thermometer, about 12-15 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.
Pour into buttered 9 x 9 x 2" pan. Cool and cut into squares. Makes about 2-1/2 lbs.
MY NOTES: I don't use corn syrup anymore, but rather coconut syrup. I've substituted it for corn syrup in several recipes with no noticeable difference. If you use the light corn syrup, the color of your caramels will be lighter than mine using the coconut syrup.
The time for the mixture to reach 245° on the thermometer seems to depend on the cooking pot you use. This batch took exactly 17 minutes, I've gone as long as 25 minutes sometimes and wonder if it also depends on the humidity of the day . . . or something else. (WOOOOooooo . . . )
I've always poured the caramel mixture into a 12 x 7-1/2" glass pan. Using a 9 x 9" pan would make the caramels thicker than I prefer.
Here's a visual of how I make the caramels.
Melt the butter in a heavy 3-quart saucepan.
Add the brown sugar and salt. Stir until thoroughly combined.
Do the same with the corn syrup and honey.
Gradually add the sweetened condensed milk stirring constantly.
Cook and stir over medium heat until candy reaches 245° on candy thermometer which should take about 12-15 minutes.
Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Then pour into buttered pan.
To cool the mixture to ready it for cutting, I put the pan into the refrigerator for about an hour. This particular time, I left it cooling for about two hours and the caramels were so hard when I tried cutting them, I had to let it sit out on the counter to warm up a bit.
This is the way I cut my caramels, but you may choose to do it differently. I score strips about 1-1/2" wide across the pan.
Then I use a metal spatula to remove each strip from the pan. (The first is always the hardest and does require some wiggling and coaxing.)
Then using my small chef's knife, I cut the strip into the size caramels I want. (During this process it's very important to taste-test a caramel [or four] to make sure they're good enough to give away for others to enjoy.)
Each caramel gets placed on a piece of candy paper and wrapped. (You can use pieces of wax paper cut to size also.)
Done and ready to be distributed. Or eaten. Enjoy!
Those look soooo good!! You are a Temptress, Mama Pea!
Rosalea - Ha! That's the first time I've ever been called a Temptress . . . of any kind! ;o)
Well, I'm not likely to ever make this recipe as we don't need the temptation and caramels scare me because of my fillings and crowns, but very good to know about coconut syrup as a sub for nasty genetically-engineered-corn syrup!
Michelle - I don't blame you a bit regarding teeth and sticky stuff. I once pulled a crown off a back molar while eating a wonderfully delicious caramel roll from a very good bakery. Haven't been able to eat one since because of the same "scare" factor! I sampled only one-half of one of these caramels I made and sucked it until it was melted rather than chewing it. :o\
Cockeyed Jo - YUN??? And YUM, too! ;o) ;o) ;o)
Thank you for the recipe! Your recipes are always so good! Happy Fall!
Looks yummy. What about the Carmel corn?
I hate to admit it, but those would never have made it out of my house! Although I am with Michelle - caramels wreak havoc on my dental work. Still....
Thanks for the recipe. I've never heard of coconut syrup. I do buy organic corn syrup (non-gmo). Hm. One of these days I will have to make these.
Sam - You're welcome! How nice of you to say so.
Goatldi - Did a blog post on the caramel corn recipe way back when. Go way down on my right hand side bar and enter "Caramel Corn" in the Search box and it should pop up for you.
Susan - A bag of the caramels are a really nice "little something" gift, like a thank you when you're invited out to dinner. Or you could eat them all yourself by not chewing, not sucking them all to death like I do! ;o)
Kristina - I hope you do get a chance to try making them. I have a feeling they'd be a special treat hit in your house!
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